Thursday, May 31, 2012

Color Choices

I have been thinking about which colors I am going to use at the Weaving Diva Dye Workshop. I have a general idea about how I will be dying the woven shibori scarves, but for the three warp chains, it's wide open. I have been given a list of the colors we will be using at the dye workshop, so I do have a general idea of the colorways that will be available.

Now that I know which colors we will be using, there are a couple of places I go to see how these colors might work together. Recently at the Cabool Weavers guild meeting, Shirley D. gave a great program on color. She suggested we go to the paint store and get paint chip samples. Not only do they have single solid colors, they also show how some colors work together.

I also have taken photos over the years that I think might help me select what colors to use on my painted warps.

And then again, as we are cleaning up at the end of the day, I usually have one warp that I like to use the 'left over' colors on. And last year, that was the one I liked the best.... So sometime it helps to 'pre-think' and other times you need to just 'go with the flow'.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Getting Ready for Dye Workshop

I am getting ready for the annual Weaving Diva Dye Workshop this next Saturday. I have two woven shibori scarves ready to dye, and three warp chains. The thing about dying warp chains, is you need to know what you are going to make before you wind that warp. After all, you need to know many ends you will need. So going to my library, I picked a great book for ideas. I got this book from: The Weavers Guild of Greater Baltimore. 60 Scarves for Sixty YearsSome of you may be able to find it in your guild libraries. And I believe the Complex Weavers Library may have it.

I wound three warps with different fibers. Using 16/2 rayon I will use the Peacock Twill draft. With 10/2 Tencel I will do the V for Virginia draft, and 2/8 Bamboo for the Northern Lights draft. All three of these drafts will work great with a painted warp.

correction: the rayon is 12/2 ..updated 5/31/2012

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

More Shrinkage

This is the length right off the loom showing runner is 42 inches long.
Notice the lace effect isn't very noticable, because this hasn't been washed yet


Now it has been washed and lightly pressed. You can see I went from 42 inches to 40 1/4 inches.
The lace really shows up now.

Monday, May 28, 2012


Remembering our families and friends on this Memorial Day.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The GOOD thing about linen is the wonderful textiles you create. Linen and lace go hand in hand.

Working with linen can be trying, at times. You always have to be vigilant and not let the linen 'spring' out of the shuttle, and watch your edges for draw-in.

The Bad!

The Ugly!!
There are some things you can do to make the linen 'weaver friendly'. You can put the wound bobbins in a plastic bag with a wet wash rag and leave it for a few hours or overnight. You don't want the yarn wet, but damp. You can mist the web as you weave. But you don't want the water to get on the wood parts of your loom. Or just weave s-l-o-w-l-y and enjoy the experience.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Another Knitted Felted Bag

Yep, I have made another one.

This one felted really well. While knitting with two different yarns, I tried holding one yarn in my right hand and the other in my left hand. I threw the yarn with my right hand (American style) and slipped the yarn off with my left hand (European style). It kept the two yarns apart and not tangled. I felted the bag, pocket and handles in the washing machine and let it air dry over a box.

I crocheted the flower and felted it in the kitchen sink. I added some sparkley light purple acrylic to the center of the flower.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Nitty Gritty

Nitty Gritty means that I am getting down to business and weaving on this runner. It goes very fast and I find that I have to unweave every now and then because the treadling is so easy.  And because I am me, I am not treadling according to the directions given with this kit. I started out that way, but the warp just wanted me to do something different. I am sure, fellow weavers, that you understand.

Here is a photo of my friend, Barney. He is sporting one of my hand-spun hand-knit wool hat. I wonder if his head is hot? Or if he finds the wool itch-y?

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Unwashed and Washed Sample

Sample of Swedish Lace:

As you can see from these two photos the Swedish lace did shrink to show off the lace areas. The unwashed linen is rather stiff while the washed and ironed one is soft and has some drape to it. Width on loom was 14 1/2 inches.

Unwashed width off loom is now 13 3/4 inches. This photo is showing the color of the actual warp better than the bottom photo.

Washed and ironed width is now 12 3/4 inches. The lace areas show up very well now.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Swedish Lace not Bronson Lace

Work has begun on the Swedish Lace runner that will look like Bronson Lace and/or Swedish Lace when finished. The linen wound on the warp beam rather easily. But it is only a five yard warp...
It will be interesting to see the difference after it has been washed. The color of this linen is a light tan instead of the white linen I have used in the past. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Bronson Lace or Swedish Lace???

After reading more of Monograph Five, Versatile Bronson by Dorothy Burton, I am thinking that this kit for a Bronson Lace project is really Swedish Lace. According to the text in this monograph,  "To identify a Bronson threading draft on has only to note that every other thread is on a single harness." And as I said in the last post: Block A is 1-2-1-2-1-4 and Block B is 4-3-4-3-4-1.

Mary E. Black in her book New Key To Weaving (1949) says, "there is so little difference between the finished appearance of Swedish lace and Bronson lace that weavers are at a loss to differentiate them."

So I will continue to thread the heddles and weave with linen and have a lovely runner when done.

Linen through the heddles.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Bronson Lace Through Reed

I have the heddles counted out and was able to get the threads through the reed. So far the linen is behaving.

Next order of business will be to get the heddles threaded.......................

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Bronson Lace History Lesson

Instead of getting my latest project on the loom, I have been doing a bit of reading about Bronson Lace. According to Monograph Five, Versatile Bronson (1984) by Dorothy S. Burton, there are three basic Bronson weaves "Spot Bronson, Bronson Lace, and Bronson II." She goes on to state that "in Scandivavia, it is called Droppdrall and in Germany it is known as Gerstenkornbindung, while Marguerite Davison calls it Barleycorn." She says that tabby is 1 against all others, but for this kit, they are having me use 1-3 vs 2-4.

For this kit "Dinner With The Bronsons"

Block A is threaded 1-2-1-2-1-4
Block B is threaded 4-3-4-3-4-1
Tabby is 1-3 against 2-4

Block A is treadled: 1-3, 4, 1-3, 4, 1-3, 2-4 
balance for block A: 1-3, 4, 1-3, 4, 1-3
Block B is treadled: 2-4, 1, 2-4, 1, 2-4, 1-3 
balance for block B: 2-4, 1, 2-4, 1 2-4

This is an example of what this draft can look like. It is showing what the two different blocks will look like.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Bronson Lace

Now that I have my woven shibori scarves ready for the Weaving Diva's Dye Day in June, it's time to think about what my next project will be. I purchased a weaving kit from Yarn Barn-Kansas a year or so ago, and think that is what I will put on the loom.

I will be using 40/2 Normandy linen. It's a four shafts, four treadles draft. The instructions says "this Bronson lace project uses a two-block threading and treadling sequence." The name of the kit is: DINNER WITH THE BRONSONS.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Woven Shibori, one down one to go!

One scarf down, another to go........ The six inch scarf is now one and a half inches wide. 

Now you may be thinking that there is a lot of prep work before you ever get to dye your scarves. But from here all I have to do is soak in soda ash water, dye, batch, dry, pull out threads, wash, dry, iron, done!!!

I will be getting together with the Weaving Divas for our yearly Dye Day on June 2nd to apply the dye to these scarves.  I hope to have a couple of regular warp chains ready to dye that day also. It's an event I look forward to each year. 
You can just barely tell the difference in the shades of yellow between the two scarves. The idea was to not have stark white peaking out when the dying is all said and done. Click to enlarge. 

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Woven Shibori Resist Threads

Now that the scarves have been dyed a pale yellow and have dried, it's time to pull those resist threads. Start on one side and pull about half way, then tie those resist threads in a knot. You need to make those knots really tight, so don't be afraid to snug them up.

Now go to the other side and pull those resist threads really tight. It help save your hands if you use something to help you pull those threads. I use a bobbin, but a pencil or knitting needle would work just as well.

I have two scarves to do, so this may take a while.........

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Shibori Dye Drying

While we wait for the Shibori scarves to dry so I can pull the resist threads, I thought I would show you one of the kitchen towels I did last year. As far as I can remember, I used three different colors of dye on an eight shaft point twill draft.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Woven Shibori continues some more

Before I pull the resist threads, I am going to dye both scarves a light yellow. And since this color will be in the background, it doesn't even have to be even. 'Splotchy' is good! (I am not really sure that is a word)......

Soaking in soda ash water.
Now I will put one scarf in a weak solution of water and lemon yellow fiber reactive dye. I don't want the background color to be very bold, so I have watered down the dye quite a bit. But I do need to remember that it will be lighter when dry.

I think this might be to light when dry, so I will add a 'pinch' of hot pink and dye the second scarf.

The next step is to wrap the scarves in cling wrap and let it batch overnight. Then I will unwrap them and let them dry completely before I can pull the resist threads. This should take another day..... so, I will maybe do some knitting, wind a warp, design a new draft, or maybe get my paper work done for the Complex Weavers Samples The Old Fashion Way...... so much to do, so little time!!!!!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Some Shibori Prep Work

I have two woven shibori scarves ready to do a little prep work on. The two scarves will be sort-of the same because I used the same threading but different treadlings. Before they are ready for the dye bath, I will need to do a bit of prep work. (click on photos to enlarge)
Woven Shibori resist pattern one. This was utilizing only pattern treadles number two and six.
Woven Shibori resist pattern two. This was using the same pattern treadles as the original red-black twill-huck scarf.
First I will twist the fringe on both scarves.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Woven Shibori Scarf Two

I finished scarf one and now I have started on scarf two using the woven shibori technique. I am still using the same threading I used for the red/black scarf. (That is the one that has combined twill and huck.) But for this I have picked to use only treadles two and six of the draft for my resist threads. I am doing each pattern treadle twice with the four picks of plain weave between.

Four rows of plain weave
Treadle 2 with resist thread
Four rows of plain weave
Treadle 2 with resist thread
Four rows of plain weave
Treadle 6 with resist thread
Four rows of plain weave
Treadle 6 with resist thread
Four rows of plain weave 

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Woven Shibori Tips

A couple of tips for making weaving shibori easier. When you need to add a new plain weave thread, you will not want to add it where it is beside a resist thread. You will be pulling out those resist threads and it won't slide out as easily if it encounters threads you have overlapped. Since I am weaving four plain weave rows between each resist thread row, I will try to add the spliced thread on the second or third row.

I also find it helps when I am ready to pull the resist threads that I have loops to grab. So if I have had to add onto the resist thread, I will tie a knot on the edge. It's not that critical, just makes it easier.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Side Tracked

I usually have a small project on the needles for when a quick trip is planned and there will be waiting involved. While looking for a bag to put the blue sock project in, I found the one sock and it's mate (fall colors) hiding in a small tote bag... Now I have two small projects to finish. These are what are officially called  UFO's!

While not working on socks, I have finished another knitted felted bag.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Woven Shibori Continues

Progress is being made. Remember that this will be a plain weave textile when finished, so you will want to maintain your plain weave order throughout. Those resist threads (pull threads) will be pulled out and thrown away.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sampling Woven Shibori

OK, I have washed and dried, pulled out the resist threads, and then ironed this sample. I think that the twill-huck treadling will make a good design. I was surprised that the linen and soy silk didn't take the dye differently. Oh well, that is why we sample! I will use the rayon for both warp and weft.

This rayon must have been a mill end. It's not as shinny as I was wanting and the hand isn't super soft, but it does have a nice drape in the plain weave using the rayon in warp and weft.

As you can see, where the fushis and blue overlapped, I got purple. I like it! 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sampling Shibori

Here I have pulled the threads on the Shibori area and am ready to add the dye.

I am soaking the fabric in soda ash water and will then immerse it in the red dye.
  (Guess there was to much red in this shot for the camera.)

Now I have brushed on some blue on one side only of the Shibori area.

Using the press'n seal I will need to let the dye set. (You could use cling wrap.) I think you should let it set overnight, but I can't wait that long, so I will let it set for a few hours and unwrap it. Then I will have to let it dry completely before I can remove the shibori pull threads.

This is the hard part, letting it dry! But don't try to pull out the resist threads until it's completely dry. If it's dry, the resist threads will pull out easily, if wet..... not so much.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Sample Sample Sample !!

I am using the same threading for this next adventure that I used for the Twill Huck Scarves. I am not sure how this draft will work, but I am going to try some woven Shibori with it. The warp and weft is white rayon and the resist threads (pull threads) are 5/2 cotton. The pull threads need to be strong and slick.

What I am doing is creating a plain weave scarf in the end. The resist threads are just a tool to get a pattern using dyes. The purple resist threads (or pull threads) are being woven between four rows of plain weave. I am weaving the twill-huck draft at the same time I am weaving the plain weave. I think you could use most any draft that had long floats as your resist pattern. Monks Belt makes a really interesting pattern if you only have four shafts to work with. Or if you have eight shafts, try a twill.

I have left loops on the edge so I will have an easy time of pulling.

Now I have added some areas of different weft threads to see how they will react with the dyes. These wefts are linen, soy silk, and purple 5/2 cotton. They should take the dye differently than the rayon.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Knitted Felted Bags

I don't know why, but I like to knit these felted bags when it's hot! It;s a break from knitting wool socks, I guess. (I am sure you understand.)

One is for a friend, and the other doesn't have a home, yet. I will put it in the 'gift closet' for a future needed gift. The pattern, in case you were wondering, is in the book Knitters Stash. It's the My Constant Companion pattern. I have a couple more I think I might make before I am done........

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Twill and Huck Scarves

This was a fun project. I really enjoyed working with the rayon and Bambu. And the way the treadling was done made them fast to weave.   

Red weft was Bambu.
Weft used was the black rayon.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Weaving Divas Guild Meeting

Attending a guild meeting is like attending a mini weaving conference. We learn a little, we laugh a little, we grow in our friendships and craft.  And the snacks are great! (Click on a photo to enlarge it.)

Dianne talks about dyeing sock blanks.

Dianne explains different ways to dye skeins.
Using dyed sock blank you get matching socks!!

Marilynn's  awsome bookmarks!

Marilynn explains how she made this rug.

Rossanna shows off beads on her boot!!

Carol models scarf she made with 8 shaft draft.

Kathy tells how she made her rug.


One of Rossanna's awsome mug rug!